Beer of the Week: Solana Beach 37th Anniversary IPA

Pizza Port celebrates its flagship brewpub's birthday shortly after opening a brand-new beachside venue

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When it comes to local-beer locales, they don’t get much more legendary than Pizza Port’s original brewpub in Solana Beach. That site for pints and pies opened in 1987, two years ahead of San Diego’s longest-operating post-Prohibition brewing operation, Karl Strauss. Five years in, sibling founders Gina and Vince Marsaglia added an in-house brewery which went on to become the first in the county (that’s still in existence today) to earn a medal at the prestigious Great American Beer Festival. It was the first account to tap beers from Stone Brewing and numerous other local breweries, and is the proud, successful origin point for a family of brewpubs that now totals six and includes a pair of North County production breweries. On top of all that, it’s launched and propelled the careers of countless young brewing professionals, a number of which have gone on to open their own beer concerns or play a significant role in the beverage industry. A place like that is worth celebrating and that’s just what this week’s featured beer, Solana Beach 37th Anniversary IPA, is all about. Golden in color and bone-dry with flavors of white peach, papaya, passion fruit and lemon pith, it’s one of two IPAs brewed for its namesake occasion. The other is a slightly different spin on the same recipe that will be available exclusively on-draft tomorrow as part of an official anniversary party, featuring pizza and barbecue specials, a t-shirt tie-dye station and an outdoor beer garden that will play host to a cornhole tournament. As Pizza Port celebrates 37 years of memories at its oldest location, it’s already making new ones at its just-opened bar and restaurant inside Mission Beach’s Belmont Park. Installed in a former Round Table Pizza, it is equipped with a quartet of taps pouring Pizza Port beers behind a 12-seat bar. It’s the smallest of the suds stalwart’s seven spots, but as proven by the illustrious history of its Solana Beach progenitor, it doesn’t take a ton of square-footage to make a large, lasting impression.

The Solana Beach 37th Anniversary IPA is a West Coast IPA brewed with Citra, Riwaka and Motueka hops. Two versions of this beer were brewed, one at Bressi Ranch and the second at Pizza Port Solana Beach. Both versions have a similar grain bill of Pilsner malt and wheat. We wanted to dry-hop them differently to set them a little more apart from each other. The Bressi Ranch version, which can be found in cans, features Riwaka SubZero Hop Kief. The Solana Beach draft-only version is double dry-hopped at over five pounds per barrel. Also special about the Solana Beach version, it was brewed with help from our co-founder, Vince Marsaglia, and Bressi Ranch Head Brewer, Joe Armstrong.”

Mike Havens, Head Brewer, Pizza Port Solana Beach
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